FUJIFILM X-T4 Hands-on Review – The Good Has Just Become Much Better

 Cinematography, Mirrorless  Comments Off on FUJIFILM X-T4 Hands-on Review – The Good Has Just Become Much Better
Feb 262020
 

The new FUJIFILM X-T4 has just been released, promising to be one of the more interesting cameras to be delivered during 2020. If you are like me, an owner of the FUJIFILM X-T3 who wished for a little extra, then the wait is over. Enhanced performance, combining the advantage of the now discontinued X-1H (stabilised sensor) and articulating LCD screen, can now be found within this newcomer camera. Prepared to be impressed by what seems to be the best all around small and lightweight APS-C sensor camera that can shoot video, currently in the market? 

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Sony Xperia 1 II and Xperia Pro Announced – New Generation CineAlta Phones with 5G

 Gear  Comments Off on Sony Xperia 1 II and Xperia Pro Announced – New Generation CineAlta Phones with 5G
Feb 242020
 

Sony has just announced their new flagship smartphone – the Xperia 1 II. It comes with a Snapdragon 865 processor and 5G connectivity, and the 21:9 CinemaWide 6.5″ 4K HDR OLED display. The phone has three 12MP rear-facing cameras (16mm, 24mm, and 70mm) and many useful functions for photographers and filmmakers. Sony has further announced the development of a new Sony Xperia Pro for professionals. Lastly, they have announced the mid-range Sony Xperia 10 II.

Xperia 1 II Smartphone announced. Source: Sony

Last year in July, my colleague Johnnie tested the Sony Xperia 1 phone with Sony’s “Cinema Pro App”. Now, the Japanese electronics giant has announced a new generation flagship phone – the Xperia 1 II. What are its features and specs?

Sony Xperia 1 II

The Xperia 1 II (Mark II) is Sony’s new flagship smartphone. It will feature the Snapdragon 865 processor with 5G connectivity, a 4.000mAh battery with wireless charging, and USB Type-C connector. It comes with IP65/68 water resistance and Corning Gorilla Glass 6 on both sides.

When it comes to memory, the phone has 8GB RAM, 256GB internal storage and it supports microSDXC memory cards with up to 1TB capacity. Good thing is that, unlike most competitors, Sony decided to keep the 3.5mm audio jack. The phone also features two front-facing stereo speakers. The dimensions of the phone are 6.5″ × 2.8″ × 0.3″ and it weighs 6.4oz.

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StabiLens – Counterweight System for Lens “Hot-Swapping” on Gimbals

 Cinematography, Gear  Comments Off on StabiLens – Counterweight System for Lens “Hot-Swapping” on Gimbals
Feb 212020
 

The StabiLens is a lens counterweight system for gimbals. It allows filmmakers to match the center of gravity of each lens in a kit, and allows for faster lens swapping when on a gimbal. It consists of a gimbal ring and a set of tungsten and steel weights. The StabiLens is already available for pre-order.

StabiLens counterweight system. Source: StabiLens

Last year in September, I wrote an article about Quickdraw by Reflex Cinema – lens counterweight system for gimbals, which lets users add weights to all lenses in your kit to match the heaviest lens. The purpose of Quickdraw was to make switching lenses on a gimbal easier as well as faster.

Recently, I came across the StabiLens counterweight system, created by US-based filmmaker Zac Miller. It basically does the same thing, but features a slightly different design. Let’s take a closer look at it.

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Rokinon XEEN CF Lens Line Expanded By 16mm T2.6 and 35mm T1.5

 Gear  Comments Off on Rokinon XEEN CF Lens Line Expanded By 16mm T2.6 and 35mm T1.5
Feb 212020
 

The ‘compact and flexible’ Rokinon XEEN CF line has been expanded by another two lenses. The new 16mm and 35mm now make up a family of 5 of these smaller and lighter lenses. 

In September last year, Rokinon made the initial announcement of the XEEN CF Lens line.

With that announcement, the 24mm, 50mm and 85mm arrived – with promise of a 16mm and 35mm in Q1 of 2020, and here we are!

The new 16mm (T2.6) and 35mm (T1.5) slot straight into the line up, and are available in 3 mounts (PL, EF and Sony E).

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Canon EOS Rebel T8i Announced – the Entry-Level DSLR Is Still Alive

 Gear  Comments Off on Canon EOS Rebel T8i Announced – the Entry-Level DSLR Is Still Alive
Feb 132020
 

Alongside the announcement of the impressive Canon EOS R5, Canon also introduced a new entry-level DSLR camera: the Canon EOS Rebel T8i, also known as EOS 850D for European shooters. This new DSLR camera features the same 24.1MP APS-C CMOS image sensor as its predecessor, the Rebel T7i, and is seen by many as Canon’s commitment to its line of DSLR cameras with EF-mounts. Let’s take a closer look at it!


Canon EOS Rebel T8i – a T7i Revamp?

The Canon EOS Rebel line of cameras originally came out in 2003 with the Digital Rebel/300D. But, some of you probably remember more of the Rebel T2i/550D that came out in 2010 (here’s my colleague Nino’s review of the T2i/550D from 2010). Indeed, the T2i featured the same image sensor as the EOS 7D. Also, it was one of the first affordable DSLR cameras capable of shooting 1080P videos. Fast-forward ten years ahead with the recent announcement of the Canon EOS Rebel T8i.

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This Week’s Top Deals for Filmmakers – Sony a7 III, Canon M6, LUMIX S1, S1H, GH5, and G9, Sachtler Tripod and More

 Gear, News  Comments Off on This Week’s Top Deals for Filmmakers – Sony a7 III, Canon M6, LUMIX S1, S1H, GH5, and G9, Sachtler Tripod and More
Feb 062020
 

There are a couple of new, interesting deals for filmmakers available. We have selected the best offers of filmmaking gear from our partners’ online shops for this week – including Sony a7 III, Canon M6, Panasonic LUMIX S1, S1H, GH5, and G9 cameras, Sachtler tripod, SSD, HDD and more.

I went through the current deals on our partners’ websites and have selected the best offers currently available, which I think could be interesting for you. First, there are B&H offers listed for our readers based in North and South America, and then there are a couple of deals from our European partner CVP. By shopping at our partners’ stores, you are supporting cinema5D through our buy links, as we get a small affiliate commission when a purchase is completed.

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FUJIFILM X-T4 Announced and FUJIFILM X100V Launched

 Gear, Mirrorless, News  Comments Off on FUJIFILM X-T4 Announced and FUJIFILM X100V Launched
Feb 052020
 

During the third X Summit in London, FUJIFILM announced the development of the FUJIFILM X-T4. Otherwise, there is currently no information at all about this new camera. Also, the new FUJIFILM X100V, a camera designed mainly for photographers, was launched. Finally, for filmmakers, three new lenses for GFX and X-Mount cameras were announced. Let’s take a closer look at it! 


FUJIFILM X Summit 2020

FUJIFILM is one of those Japanese camera manufacturers who takes the video capabilities of their mirrorless camera seriously. As such, we have decided to share with the community their X Summit meeting happening in London, live.

A year ago, almost to the date, the 1st. X Summit was held in Dubai, and that is where past GFX medium format camera concept ideas, along with a working prototype of their GFX 100 were shown. Since then, lots of water has flown in the Thames river. The successful GFX 100 is already shipping (watch our two parts documentary on how this camera is being made by clicking here and here). Additionally, as promised during this X summit, the FUJIFILM X-T3 is continuously being updated with new firmware, adding features and improvements to our camera of the year 2019.

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Blackmagic Pocket 4K and 6K Get New Camera V6.8 Firmware Update

 Cinematography, Gear  Comments Off on Blackmagic Pocket 4K and 6K Get New Camera V6.8 Firmware Update
Feb 042020
 

Blackmagic Design just released the new Camera V6.8 firmware update for both Pocket 4K and 6K cameras. The new firmware improves camera stratup times and USB PTP control performance, and it fixes the issue with slow mounting of media containing large number of clips. Further, it fixes the issue with EF lens stabilization for the Pocket 6K camera.

Blackmagic Design Camera v6.8 for BMPCC 4K and 6K released. Image credit: cinema5D

Blackmagic Pocket Cinema Camera 4K and 6K both offer very nice image quality for the price. Although the cameras do have some shortcommings, which often need to be adressed by third party solutions (powering, media, etc.), they have gotten quite popular among filmmakers. To know more about these cameras, or to refresh some features and specs, make sure to check one of our older articles:

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Moment Variable ND Filters for Cameras and DJI Mavic 2 Pro

 Gear  Comments Off on Moment Variable ND Filters for Cameras and DJI Mavic 2 Pro
Jan 302020
 

Moment, the company specialized in mobile filmmaking, has just introduced two new products: the Moment Variable ND filters for cameras, and a version for DJI Mavic 2 Pro drones. This offer from Moment is their introduction to the “traditional” camera accessories market. Let’s take a closer look at it!

Moment Variable ND Filters for Cameras

A couple of months, Moment released their first ND and CPL filters for smartphones. Today, the team at Moment is back with a combination of the two pieces of glasses, but for cameras. Indeed, they just introduced two sets of variable ND filters for DSLR/Mirrorless and cameras that accept screw-in filters in general.

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FUJIFILM X-T200 Announced – 4K Video, Digital Stabilization & Square Video

 Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on FUJIFILM X-T200 Announced – 4K Video, Digital Stabilization & Square Video
Jan 232020
 

The FUJIFILM X-T200 is the latest entry-level 24.2MP mirrorless camera with 4K video, capable of shooting 1:1 square format HD video and ‘Digital Gimbal’ stabilization. The standard video frame rates, flipped screen, faster autofocus and as a lightweight of only 370 grams, this new model improved in many ways compared to its predecessor.

FUJIFILM X-T200 – Image source: FUJIFILM

The latest mirrorless X-mount camera from FUJINON offers up a range of video features ideal for entry-level filmmaking and vlogging including 4K video up to 30p. A new 24.2MP sensor has a faster readout speed than the X-T100 which results in less rolling shutter. The inclusion of 1×1 ‘square’ aspect ratio in HD reflects a trend in shooting content for social media.

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Zero Zero Robotics V-Coptr Falcon – World’s First V-Shaped Bi-Copter

 Cinematography, Gear  Comments Off on Zero Zero Robotics V-Coptr Falcon – World’s First V-Shaped Bi-Copter
Jan 222020
 

Zero Zero Robotics rencently announced their new unique-looking drone: the V-Coptr Falcon. Indeed, this v-shaped bi-copter doesn’t look like your traditional quad-copter drone, because it only features two motors and two propellers. The V-Coptr Falcon can fly for up to 50 minutes with a transmission distance of 7km, it can avoid obstacles, and it features a 4K 3-axis stabilized camera. Let’s take a closer look at it!

Zero Zero Robotics

Zero Zero Robotics is a Chinese company that launched its first product – the Hover 2 – via Kickstarter about a year ago. The campaign for this autonomous drone was a huge success, and they raised over $1M quickly. However, to this day, all backers didn’t receive their pledge yet.

In a surprising move, the team at Zero Zero Robotics announced the launch of a new drone, the V-Coptr Falcon.

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Tokina Expands its Full Frame Lineup with the atx-m 85mm F/1.8 FE Lens

 Gear, Mirrorless  Comments Off on Tokina Expands its Full Frame Lineup with the atx-m 85mm F/1.8 FE Lens
Jan 212020
 

Tokina has released a new lens for Sony E-mount cameras: the Tokina atx-m 85mm F/1.8 FE. This latest addition to the Tokina lineup covers Full-Frame sensors. Let’s take a closer look at this perfect portrait lens for photographers and filmmakers!

Tokinaatx85-m_Featured

Image credit: Tokina

Tokina atx-m Lineup

The Tokina ATX line of lenses is out for a couple of years now, and the most famous one is probably the AT-X 11-16mm F/2.8 wide-angle zoom lens for Super35 cameras. Today, Tokina has just announced the launch of a new lineup of lenses for mirrorless cameras with the Tokina atx-m 85mm F/1.8 FE. According to Tokina, the atx-m series of glasses will be available in various mounts – probably Nikon Z and Canon RF mounts – and new lenses will be announced this year.

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Panasonic Announces Three New 4K 60p Camcorders – HC-X1500, HC-X2000 and AG-CX10

 Cinematography, Gear  Comments Off on Panasonic Announces Three New 4K 60p Camcorders – HC-X1500, HC-X2000 and AG-CX10
Jan 092020
 

During CES 2020 in Las Vegas, Panasonic announced three new compact camcorders with 1/2.5″ sensors. The HC-X1500, HC-X2000 and AG-CX10 all offer 4K 60p recording capability (4:2:2 10-bit up to 4K 30p) along with 24x optical zoom (25mm-600mm full-frame equivalent) lens. They offer 5-axis O.I.S, two manual rings, ND filters, a built-in LED video light, 24-bit linear PCM audio recording, a built-in Wi-Fi module for streaming, and more.

New Panasonic Camcorders. Image source: Panasonic

With the recent rise of full-frame cinema cameras, it might look like that large sensors are taking over the whole video industry and Super 35 will become the bare minimum. In reality, there is always the right tool for the right job, and often a larger sensor is actually counter-productive. Compact broadcast cameras with smaller sensors still have their use and camera manufacturers want to offer such camcorders for this market segment – albeit it’s admittedly shrinking.

During CES 2020 in Las Vegas, Panasonic announced three new camcorders with small image sensors, but all are capable of 4K 60p recording, H265, and 4:2:2 10-bit internal video in some modes. Let’s take a quick look at what they offer.

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Nikon Z 6 and Atomos Ninja V ProRes RAW Recording Option – First Look

 Cinematography, Gear  Comments Off on Nikon Z 6 and Atomos Ninja V ProRes RAW Recording Option – First Look
Jan 062020
 

The Nikon Z 6 and Z 7 have been around for quite some time but now it’s getting a new life. Something that will greatly elevate its performance thanks to the collaboration with Atomos. While Nikon is bringing to the table a full frame sensor camera, 12 bit RAW output via HDMI and a flat picture profile recording option (N Log), Atomos is contributing to this duo its external monitor/recorder expertise together with the built-in Apple’s ProRes RAW 12 bit recording option. There are many “industry firsts” in this exciting combination, including transferring the information between the camera and monitor/recorder on a consumer HDMI protocol interface. Now, openly speaking, is offering full frame, up to 4K, 12 bit ProRes RAW external recording option, enough to bring Nikon back to the center of attention of the aspiring filmmakers and content creators? Please read on.

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Wooden Camera Sony FX9 Accessories Announced

 Gear  Comments Off on Wooden Camera Sony FX9 Accessories Announced
Dec 202019
 

Wooden Camera has announced their accessory kits for the new full frame Sony FX9 Camcorder. The Sony FX9 accessories range from top handle and 15mm rails to dovetail baseplate with monitor mount.

Sony’s new full-frame cinema camera Sony FX9 has been introduced during this year’s IBC show in Amsterdam and it will start shipping soon. If you want to know more about the camera, make sure to check our previous articles:

Like all of Wooden Camera accessory lines for specific cameras, the Sony FX9 Accessories span over 3 packages – Base, Advanced and Pro.

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SteadXP+ First Look Review – A Promising Camera Stabilization System

 Gear  Comments Off on SteadXP+ First Look Review – A Promising Camera Stabilization System
Dec 122019
 

Five years ago, a little company from France called SteadXP shook the Internet with a “game-changing” small box and stabilization technology made for GoPro and DSLR/Mirrorless cameras. This box attaches to your camera and records all the motion data of your camera so that you can stabilize your footage in post-production. The concept was revolutionary back in the days. Nowadays, with action cameras that feature in-body image stabilization that works just as well – if not better –, SteadXP is trying to move to the cinema market with SteadXP+. But is this product and technology still relevant? Let’s take a closer look at it in this hands-on review.

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Panasonic S1 – EXCLUSIVE $400 cinema5D Discount + Free $200 V-Log Upgrade

 Gear  Comments Off on Panasonic S1 – EXCLUSIVE $400 cinema5D Discount + Free $200 V-Log Upgrade
Dec 102019
 

Panasonic is offering a sizeable discount on our “Mirrorless Camera of the Year“, the Panasonic S1, exclusively to cinema5D readers. Read on to learn more!

Last week, we published our long “mirrorless camera of the year” post, and while there have been MANY contenders, the Panasonic S1 came out on top for its perfect price/performance ratio. And Panasonic seems really happy about this result – they got in touch offering an exclusive $400 discount for cinema5D readers, plus the V-Log Filmmaker Upgrade worth $199 for free!

In order to get hold of this offer, you have to order the Panasonic S1 via this exclusive link at B&H.

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Aputure 120d MK II with Spotlight Mount Review

 Cinematography, Gear  Comments Off on Aputure 120d MK II with Spotlight Mount Review
Dec 032019
 

Our colleague, Nino Leitner, originally went hands-on with the Aputure 120d MK II back in April of 2018 at NAB and since then the light has shipped and we’ve even reviewed the 300D MK II, but it’s time to circle back and put the 120d MK II to the test. Along with the fixture, this is the perfect opportunity to try out the brand new Aputure Spotlight Mount. The full review of the light and new accessory is below: 

Image Credit: Graham Sheldon

Aputure LS C120D II LED COB Light:

I recently reviewed the MC series and the new 300D MK II and it seemed like an oversight to not spend more time with the 120D II. As a longtime user of the first generation 120D, I was particularly interested in the design updates in the second generation. Is it worth upgrading? Or, if you own the original 120D are you okay waiting? Let’s dive in.

On paper, the 120D MK II boasts a 25% output improvement over the MK I and it also balances out of the box to 5500 kelvin, versus the 6000 kelvin of the first generation. You could always correct that 400 Kelvin difference in the older version to “standard daylight” using gels, but I prefer a fixture that works out of the box in either 32K or 56K as it’s just easier to use in most situations and matches other light brands better. Also, color temp correction gels are feeling a little old school these days given the ubiquity of RGB panels that allow precise kelvin color temperatures to be dialed in with a quick button press.

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Panasonic S1 & Canon FD lenses – Full Frame, 10-bit Recording Kit Under $3500

 Gear  Comments Off on Panasonic S1 & Canon FD lenses – Full Frame, 10-bit Recording Kit Under $3500
Dec 022019
 

Are you playing with the thought to enter into the 10-bit full frame filmmaking world but think it’s prohibitively expensive? Here is a sub $3500 suggestion. If you are willing to invest money and time, the combination of working with the Panasonic S1 equipped with Canon’s FD lenses is fun and a good reason to collect some older items too.

Panasonic S1 with the Canon FD 35mm f2 lens. Image credit: Gunther Machu

If you are like me, an enthusiast hobbyist who is digging the full frame look but don’t want to go back to 8-bit codecs,  then I’m sure we are sharing the same dilemma. I’ve started filming 10 years ago with a Panasonic GH1 and later moved to the original BMPCC camera but the full frame “look” always fascinated me and 8 vs 10-bit became a deal breaker when choosing my next camera.

My Wish List When Considering a Camera

  • a full frame sensor camera to get this creamy shallow depth of field with fast primes
  • a robust 4K 4:2:2 10-bit internal codec
  • the cam has a LOG image picture profile that provides good dynamic range and is flexible enough for grading in post
  • in body image (sensor) stabilization  (IBIS) would be great
  • the audio department should provide good sound quality with a headphone output, of course
  • a good viewfinder and/or screen is mandatory
  • decent battery life
  • lenses should cover wides and moderate tele and should be fast (below f4, ideally f2) – otherwise you would defy the purpose to go for full frame
  • in addition, the lenses should provide robust mechanics, a buttery smooth focus throw to allow for precise manual focus adjustment with hard stops at close and infinity focus
  • I don’t like messing with rigs, external recorders, HDMI cables, and all the auxiliary stuff and need a compact footprint
  • As a hobbyist, I just don’t want to spend more than $3500 all in all

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QooCam 8K – The World’s Smallest 8K 360 Camera

 Gear  Comments Off on QooCam 8K – The World’s Smallest 8K 360 Camera
Nov 182019
 

Kandao has launched the world’s smallest 8K 360 camera. The QooCam 8K offers 8K 10-bit video up to 200Mbps at 30fps and 4K at up to 120fps.

Kandao 8K – Image source cinema5D

I’ve been using the original QooCam for about a year. I’m also using the Insta360 One X and have used the Insta360 One before that. However, there’s two things that have been holding me back. The first thing I’ve been waiting for is 8K in an affordable, accessible 360 camera. The second thing is 10-bit video encoding at high bit-rates (something that also really needs to come to smartphones very soon). The fact is, 8K is really a minimum to capture a full 360 with sufficient detail and clarity. QooCam has delivered this and more with the QooCam 8K.

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